May 25, 2010

"What is going on at the deep level of the brain is pretty much the same everywhere."

"But of course how we talk and think about it, what we do to show it to others, etc., may well be shaped by culture."

15 comments:

Kirby Olson said...

It's generally a mistake, and the Chinese are right to worry that they are mistaking a mistake. We should have more songs about the mistaken nature of "love," and how it kills many people.

dbp said...

"...evoked a unique pattern of neural activation in the area of the brain associated with intense reward — similar to the patterns shown when people take addictive drugs or gamble."

Much the same might be seen in the brains of scientists whose experiments seem to be going well.

"“To our delight we got some very clear patterns there,” Dr. Aron said. “We checked to see whether any plausible area of the brain would predict that, and we got a very strong result.”"

traditionalguy said...

The believing Christians now sometimes call themselves "Love Vigilantes". Love has enemies everywhere like a Planned Parenthood being paid by Obama's Stupackless heath care bill saving the world from human babies carrying the dangerous capability to loving others.

Ricardo said...

That was easy. Now, will someone please study the difference between a conservative brain and a liberal brain. Or between a centrist brain and a fringe brain (of any kind).

ricpic said...

Romantic love was invented by troubadours sometime in the 12th century. And it only applied to a very slim sliver of the population, the aristocracy. This is not to say that love is not real. It has existed in many forms and in every human culture. But romantic love is a construct. And a highly destructive one at that.

Scott M said...

I suppose I would need your working definition of "romantic love".

HKatz said...

Brain scan studies should be interpreted with caution, especially for higher-level cognitive functions and complex emotions like love.

For instance, showing a photo of a loved one to someone in a scanner... isn't, in and of itself, the best stimuli to get at the nature of romantic love, nor does it necessarily reveal what's going on in the brain.

Just because two different activities activate similar areas of the brain, doesn't necessarily mean those activities are the same. Different activities may recruit similar brain areas in different ways, the rates of neuronal firing might be different, or how those groups of neurons synchronize their activity with groups in other areas of the brain... usually when you read the original research article on which these kinds of findings are based, the language is a lot more circumspect, for good reason.

ricpic said...

Scott M - Put in very simple form romantic love = infatuation.

Scott M said...

How is "infatuation" a construct or limited to aristocracy? Infatuation is a wholly emotional reaction that one has very little control over. Indeed, infatuation, if memory serves, is irrational passion for another.

edutcher said...

Or just plain old lust. I once heard love at first sight defined as 2 extremely horny, but not very choosy, people.

The reason people in Red China define it as a frightening thing is that Red China is, after all, a totalitarian regime and losing control in that fashion can get you in all kinds of trouble.

Coming soon to a federal government near you.

Fred4Pres said...

My guess that fire down below is pretty much the same everywhere else too.

ricpic said...

You're right Scott M, infatuation is perfectly natural. Romantic love is masturbatory infatuation, infatuation unnaturally inflated into a fantasy that cannot be sustained.

Scott M said...

Ah, then you're referring to love in the narrative sense and I would agree that it's necessarily unachievable. I would suggest that romance, as a narrative vehicle, existed into Antiquity though.

Richard Dolan said...

The authors conclude: “What the study does suggest is that love is a powerful force in human life. What is going on at the deep level of the brain is pretty much the same everywhere. But of course how we talk and think about it, what we do to show it to others, etc., may well be shaped by culture.”

They had to do a study to reach those conclusions? Must have been funded by the government.

Meade said...

Kirby Olson said...
It's generally a mistake, and the Chinese are right to worry that they are mistaking a mistake. We should have more songs about the mistaken nature of "love," and how it kills many people

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